Why, in 2021, are we still crouching in front of public restroom stalls to check if they are occupied? Or guessing whether the dishwasher is “dirty or clean”? Or interrupting meetings because we did not know someone was using the room? Or making unnecessary trips to the community mailbox on the corner only to discover the mail has not yet come?

It would seem that a mainstream notification solution for ordinary, frequent inquiries would have been developed by now — whether yet another app, an electronic monitor to display the status, or even the low-tech solution of “vacant/occupied” that some enlightened designers have incorporated. If the US Postal Service can email me a scan of the mail I’m getting, surely they can find a way to ping me when the mail is actually here.

If you are able to provide notification for a mundane but repetitive inquiry about the status of something in your organization, please do it. Rid us of the equivalent of checking for feet in the restroom stall. While we tolerate it, there has to be a better way.

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